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Travel Insurance is one of the most misunderstood forms of insurance but important to understand and consider buying if you are traveling on a package with us. It is not something that most people enjoy purchasing, nor a requirement to travel with us, but we HIGHLY recommend buying it and can come in handy and give you peace of mind! Below are our Top 10 Travel Insurance Questions.
Top 10 Travel Insurance Questions
1) What exactly is Travel Insurance? – Travel insurance is an insurance policy purchased directly by an insurance company that is intended to cover medical expenses, trip cancellation, and mishaps when traveling abroad or within your home country.
2) What does Travel Insurance Cover? – Travel insurance typically covers:
- Medical Care and Treatment while Abroad.
- Trip Cancellation due to unforeseen Reasons (typically medical, death of a family member, loss of a job, etc).
- Emergency Transportation/Evacuation back to your home country in case of an emergency.
- Lost Baggage/Delayed Baggage Benefits.
- Coverage for personal belongings while on your trip (in case of theft).
3) Doesn’t my homeowner’s insurance/medical insurance/credit card cover these things? Possibly. This depends on your particular coverage. Some homeowner’s insurance policies have exclusions for your goods /items while traveling abroad. The same may apply for your medical coverage. It is very important to phone your health insurer to make sure that you will be covered abroad in case you were to need medical treatment. Many insurers cover, many don’t. It is better to be safe than sorry!
As far as credit cards, check with your credit card issuer. Some very high-end rewards cards may cover things like lost baggage and trip cancellation, but many have low limits or are designed as supplementary to travel insurance policies. We highly recommend checking with your card company to make sure you are covered for trip cancellation and the exact dollar limit to make sure you re adequately covered (especially in the case of Rio Carnival, New Year’s packages to Rio and Pamplona and Special Event packages which are usually 100% non-refundable!!)
4) Should I purchase a policy? – If you are purchasing an expensive package and cannot afford to be out cancellation fees, or if you are traveling on a special event package that is non-refundable such as New Year’s in Rio, Brazil Carnivals (Rio & Salvador), or the Running of the Bulls in Pamplona, ABSOLUTELY purchase coverage to protect your investment!! Another reason to purchase coverage is in case you or a loved one is ill or has medical issues and there could be a chance of trip cancellation or need for the medical benefit while traveling.
5) Will I get my money back if I decide to cancel? – This depends. If you purchase the standard coverage, you are only covered for trip cancellation due to reasons that are UNFORESEEN AND UNEXPECTED. Examples include such things as a death of a loved one or a travel companions’ family member, a medical emergency preventing you or your travel companion from traveling, a job layoff, a natural disaster (we all remember the infamous Icelandic Volcano a few years ago!), a terrorist event occurring in your home city or destination city, etc. There is also a “cancel for any reason” upgrade for most of the travel insurance products. Cancel for Any Reason is more expensive than the “normal” coverage and typically will pay out a maximum of about 75% of the unrecoverable trip cost but could cover more situations in terms of cancellation. If you have questions regarding coronavirus cancellation coverage click HERE.
6) How do I get paid if I purchased the coverage and need to cancel or to pay for medical treatment? – Typically, for trip cancellation, you must notify us in writing that you are canceling, and the specific reason. You then call the travel insurance company and file a claim for any amounts TGW is unable to recover. If the reason for cancellation is a “covered reason” and you fill out the paperwork correctly and provide documentation, you should receive a check promptly from the insurance company. Medical treatment typically is paid by you via cash/credit directly to the health care provider and reimbursed after filling out paperwork upon return to your country of origin.
7) What are some real-life examples of TGW guests using insurance? – In the past few years, we have had guests receive coverage and payment for many reasons. Some examples have included:
- A couple from New York canceling an expensive non-refundable trip for New Year’s in Rio de Janeiro due to their home being severely damaged by Hurricane Sandy.
- A young man receiving a check from the insurance company to reimburse him for buying toiletries and a change of clothes when his bag was delayed by 1 day in Mykonos, Greece.
- A young man receiving reimbursement for medical bills related to a broken ankle while on a trip with us.
- A guest of ours receiving reimbursement for a hotel night, and a change of airfare due to a missed connection due to a thunderstorm delaying a connection into Miami.
8) When should I purchase the coverage? – You typically must purchase it within 10 days to 14 days of initial trip booking to be fully covered by the insurance company without any exclusions. For “Cancel for Any Reason” coverage, most insurance companies require that you purchase the coverage within the first 14 days after your initial trip deposit. (carriers and time frames can vary).
9) How do I purchase the coverage? – To purchase the coverage, please click HERE. Enter your trip cost, state of residency, age, etc on the right-hand side of the webpage under “get a quote”. Note that travel insurance is always priced separately from any package and is not required but HIGHLY recommended. You are also free to shop around for coverage with any company of your choosing. To purchase “cancel for any reason” you must “opt-in” and SELECT on it in the link.
10 ) Must I be a US citizen or resident to purchase the coverage offered by TGW? – Yes. If you are a NON-USA Citizen or resident the coverage will not be valid in the link above as they only underwrite for US citizens. We recommend shopping online for a reputable travel insurance company in your country.
We encourage all guests with specific coverage questions or situations to contact the insurance company before purchasing their policy and carefully reading the “fine print”.
If you have questions regarding coronavirus cancellation coverage click HERE.